Posts Tagged ‘Auckland’

Draft submission to the Draft Unitary Plan – this is for individuals to use should they wish and modify in any way they like

May 15th, 2013

Hi all,

Submissions for the Unitary plan have to be in by 31st May. We want you to have your input but realise that MEVP members may well have diverse views. A few of us have put together a draft submission, please see below. We will not be putting in a MEVP viewpoint (as this is not established) but will be submitting as individuals. We encourage you to rework this draft so it reflects your position, submissions can be done online.

This is our chance to have a say –please take it.

Judith Holtebrinck

MEVP coordinator

Auckland 14.05.2013

Draft submission to the Draft Unitary Plan – this is for individuals to use should they wish and modify in any way they like

We would like to congratulate Auckland Council on the Draft Unitary Plan and hope that our feedback will support the vision of the most liveable city with thriving communities, a good public transport system and enough green space for people to share. As part of the worldwide Transition Town movement it is our wish that this plan supports a city that is prepared to deal with climate change issues, has less dependency on fossil fuels, is designed to reduce green-house gases and enforces sustainable solutions for new buildings and developments.

Why the rush?

As we understand, this is a document that will shape the future of our city for the next 30 years and there are only 3 month for the reviewing process.

Recommendation: Allow more time for the reviewing process to make sure all submissions will be considered and included.


We are concerned about the assumed fast growth in our city, more people means more cars, more traffic, more pollution and less space.

Recommendation: To develop programs to encourage people to live in other cities and move away from Auckland. Work with the government to support new businesses outside of Auckland.

Natural environment:

Volcanic views shafts: One of the unique natural highlights our city has to offer is  our volcanoes. We would strongly recommend that the view shafts to these volcanoes are protected. Buildings into the view shafts will destroy the appeal of our city for us and for visitors. The volcanoes must continue to be the feature of our landscape as they make our city so special and different from all other cities around the world.

Recommendation: To protect these views shafts and continue to have the current rules of height restrictions as outlined in the Operative Auckland City District Plan 1999. The 9m blanket height limit restrictions around the base of the cones (inside or outside the viewshafts) must be changed from a non-complying activity to a prohibited activity.

Trees in our community: In a time where we need trees to reduce greenhouse gases we would like to see a better protection for existing trees and the planting of more trees. Recommendation: Have a clear rule around the protection of our trees, plant more trees and secure space for parks and trees.

Heritage and historic character – Mt Eden:

We are pleased that under the Draft Unitary plan buildings pre 1944 will be protected. We are concerned about the rezoning around our community which will allow developers to build terrace housing up to 13.5m height in some of our heritage character streets close to the village centre and Maungawhau. Mt Eden is one of the few communities with an intact heritage town centre, which is a travel destination for many Aucklanders and people from overseas, helping our small businesses to thrive.


The following areas should be considered for rezoning from the proposed Terrace Housing and Apartments zone to a Single House zone: the east of Mt Eden Rd at Mt Eden Village.

The following areas should be considered for rezoning from the proposed Mixed Housing to a Single House zone: west of Mt Eden Rd at Mt Eden Village should be zoned Single House zone, not the proposed Mixed Housing zone.

Mt Eden Village: the suggested 4 storey building in Mt Eden Village would destroy the heritage nature of our community.

Recommendation: Zone Mt Eden Village as a Neighbourhood Centre not the proposed Local Centre and continue to have a height restriction of 9m for any new buildings in Mt Eden Village.

Recommendation: To keep a restricted height around Mt Eden Village to ensure the heritage character of our community will be there for many years to come and have a height restriction in the village.

Please also include the following buildings in our village as historic heritage places:

  • Barfoot and Thomson real-estate building (427 Mt Eden Rd)
  • De Post (466 Mt Eden Rd)
  • Methodist church (449 Mt Eden Rd)
  • Mantells (466 Mt Eden Rd)
  • Mazaiki Café building (421 Mt Eden Rd)
  • the Mt Eden Bowling club (17 Stokes Road),
  • Frasers Café (434 Mt Eden Rd)
  • Circus Circus (447 Mt Eden Rd) which is already listed.

Heritage and historic character

We support the plan to protect houses pre 1944, however, we are concerned that these can be removed without public notification.

Recommendation: Need rules for clear protection..


We would like to see a better public transport system and more people using it.

Recommendation: Convert car parks in the city into apartments, do not build more car parks, build more cycle lanes to make cycling safer and invest in trains and buses.


If we want to improve our city’s lifestyle we have to move away form the big business idea of shopping malls and big supermarket chains and have instead, many small decentralised  business as found in European cities.

Recommendation: Stop building any further shopping malls that, can only be reached by car.  They are buildings that do not contribute to the general aesthetic of a most liveable city. Support development of small independent shops that create neighbourhood community and which people can walk or cycle to rather than using cars.  More small decentralised shops where people can walk or cycle to and do not need to use their car.

Parks and community:

In the proposed apartment blocks people will not have space to grow some of their own food and to connect with nature.

Recommendation: Ensure that new developments have green space around them and create more local parks. In a time where we are running out of resources on this planet it is important that local food production is part of our city. We need more parks that can be used to produce local food, have food gardens, fruit trees and green space in which children can play and people  exercise.

We also understand that under the current draft Unitary Plan it would be possible to do the following activities as Permitted (P) or Restricted Discretionary (RD) for Mt Eden Reserve volcanic cone and Nicholson Park:

construction of buildings, additions or                       ●   workers’ accommodation
alterations                                                              ●   roads
●   community facilities (eg. places of                        ●   recreation centres
worship, halls, libraries, etc.)                                 ●   retail
●   public amenities (eg. toilets, park furniture,          ●   marae complex
changing rooms, showers, etc.)                              ●   informal recreation and leisure
●   information facilities (eg. visitor centre)                ●   parks field structures
●   any activity identified in an incorporated                         ●   art works
concept plan or adopted reserve
management plan, placed in a different location.

Further activities allowed for Mt Eden Reserve:
●   camping grounds                                                    ●   conservation forestry

Further activities allowed for Nicholson Park:
●   organized sports and recreation                             ●   markets
●   floodlights and support towers                             ●   restaurants
●   car parking and associated vehicle access              ●   grandstands

With increased population density, our existing green spaces are of increased importance and must be protected.

Recommendation: Any of these activities planned for Mt Eden Reserve or Nicholson Park or other Public Open Space zones. (eg. Windmill Road Park, Melville Park, Pollard Park, Potters Park, Three Kings Reserve etc.) must be approved through a notified application process to ensure that these green spaces remain intact for the community.

Affordable neighbourhoods

With extremely high food and house prices in Auckland it is important that we have affordable housing. However, we don’t see that we will get these affordable homes built by developers. Our concern is that new proposed terrace housing again will only be available for the more fortunate people in our community or wealthy immigrants.

Recommendation: To come up with a development for social housing. This way the council could guarantee that these houses are built to design and environmental building standards to last longer and that their  rent is affordable.

Auckland CBD as been scarred by developers for a long time and the outcome is now a city centre that in some parts looks like east Germany in its worst era, featuring concrete buildings with no appeal. We are concerned that thee suggested design standards don’t have to be followed by developers and therefore we will get more badly designed and built homes. Recommendation: New developments have to follow clear and enforceable rules rather than guidelines for buildings (either mixed housing or single housing) in heritage areas such as Mt Eden. Guidelines with good intentions are useless without enforcement.


Denser living will mean more consideration for others around noise will be needed. Our current laws are ineffective. Noise controls will also be needed with a lot of  development occurring.

Recommendation: We need  decibel limits and recognition of the particular problem with bass sounds which can travel at low decibels.

WE also need strict decibel limits and times that are allowed for building construction. No building on Saturdays or Sundays at all

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Our submission on the Auckland Plan

October 28th, 2011

We would firstly like to congratulate the Auckland council on producing such an encouraging and well-written draft Auckland plan. We strongly support the mayor’s vision of creating the most liveable city by acknowledging the current problems our city is facing and embracing new and positive approaches that are beneficial for both the people and the environment.

In general we would like to see Auckland as a place that acknowledges its diversity and different communities rather than seeing Auckland as one big uniform place. We support the vision of creating a stunning city centre with well-connected towns, villages and neighbourhoods with an improved public transport.

We would like to see more support for active community groups that encourage community members to change their habits and practices from one based on the old unsustainable model of living, designed around unlimited access to cheap oil, cheap imports and consumerism to a new sustainable model of living, which encourages recycling, local food production and the careful use of the planet’s natural resources.

We would like joint projects between council and community groups to have more transparency. To make the best use of ratepayers’ dollars, we would like community groups to be able to get quotes from independent contractors and not have to use council’s contractors. This healthy competition will ensure best value for money, guarantee community involvement as well as reducing the perception of “jobs for the boys”..

Download our submission

Chapter one: – Population growth:

We are concerned by the intention to grow our city before we have systems in place that can cope with a larger population. We would first like to see Auckland as a functioning city that offers systems and structures that can deal with a population increase.

We currently see our city as a place that has not sufficient pubic transport for the existing population. We are concerned by the impact on our environment this suggested increased population will bring. The lack of recycling centres/options and regulations is a problem that needs to be rectified before we start creating more waste .


Chapter 1
We support the strategic directions outlined in chapter one, specifically the support of community-led development. We see this as an opportunity to build strong and resilient communities which we believe are especially important in a time of global economic instability and uncertainty.

In order to achieve this we would like to see a framework to recognise, fund and support community generated initiatives and community groups that are working on projects to promote a less fossil-fuel driven lifestyle with the focus on local food production.

We would like to see an improvement in communication with council officers and ask for council officers to be more amenable to the idea and reality of working with community groups. More transparency is needed for projects to be done more economically and efficiently. Community groups should not be seen as fundraisers to generate income for council officers to spend.

Community groups are a valuable asset to our city. They deliver quality work and should not be treated as cheap or free labour. These are exactly the people who will shape, design and implement a liveable Auckland – a city for people, not profit margins.


•    To get the most value for raised funds, let community groups choose the best contactor to work with for their project. A transparent selection process is absolutely necessary to choose from contractors suggested by council, private sector contractors or members of the community group.

•    Community groups should be able to choose a preferred council officer for their community projects, someone who has a proven track record for positive contribution and work with community groups.

•    Making community contribution easy and fun instead of difficult and a burden. Once an officer has agreed to work on a specific project with a group, this officer will be in communication and be accountable to the group. Email correspondence will be followed up or at least acknowledged..

•    Projects to be a collaborative effort with a clear time line, division of responsibilities and updates sent to the group if requested.

•    A framework with guidelines is needed to bring both community groups and council officers together to achieve the best possible outcome for a community project.

•    After the completion of a community project we would like to see a feedback form that will enable council officers to improve their service.

Chapter 3, Integrate art, culture, heritage and lifestyle into our everyday life
We are in favour of a city that embraces art, culture as well as our heritage. We want a plan that recognises enjoyment and quality of life and adds to the value of our city and communities.

We would like to see more community centres and public spaces in our city, that can be used for arts and cultural events and create a platform for the community to meet and engage.

Chapter 4, Auckland economy
We have to make sure that our economy delivers opportunity and prosperity AS WELL AS protecting our quality of life and our environment. We want an economy that is sustainable and encourages new greener ways of doing business. We do not believe that we should try to compete with a cheap mass production that countries like china can offer and we would like to see a focus on quality instead of quantity.

With the increasing instability of the global economy which depends on economic growth for its survival, we would like to see a more sustainable approach which means acting AND thinking locally. We need to support our smaller local businesses that can operate on a smaller scale and create sustainable local jobs. With the end of cheap oil we need to start producing and buyjng locally.

•    A more “internally focused” society and economy, where domestic food, shelter and energy production are prioritised above export and import.
•    Plant fruit trees for the public
•    Focus on clean technology and the approach in sustainable eco technology is the right direction.
•    Products made in New Zealand should stand for free range, GE free, organic products, proudly made by healthy people. Perhaps Auckland could be GE free or we could have a “Produced GE Free in Auckland” or “Organic Auckland” certification.
•    Economic regeneration and social enterprise
•    Localisation as economic development
•    Community Asset ownership, social procurement and local tendering
•    Think local,act local, support small businesses in communities
•    Support New Zealand made products
•    Support farmers’ and craft markets that are beneficial and create vibrant communities.
•    Support communities that come up with innovative solutions to problems such as waste. Example: Waste minimisation program from the Mt Eden Village People which engages a third of the local shops to minimise waste going to land fill. Wilson Street Community Garden and Mt Eden Community Garden that offers free composting facilities to the community.

Chapter 5, Auckland environment:
We strongly support the acknowledgement that people and nature are inseparable and that we have to take care of our precious environment. Stronger rules and regulations need to be put into place to make sure we can protect our environment for future generations and create the world’s most liveable city. We would like to see the following actions included in the Auckland waste minimisation plan:

Waste minimisation and management
•    Introduce a tax on plastic bags, as in Ireland, to reduce the use of plastic bags
•    Reintroduce a refund on bottles as in most European countries and in South Australia
•    Introduce a fine for littering such as in Australia, England, Singapore, USA
•    Strict rules and regulations for the packaging industry with the focus on reducing packaging or replacing it with biodegradable and compostable products
•    Collect food waste
•    Set up local recycling centres and local recycling initiatives
•    Zero waste policy for all council events
•    Printing of council brochures on recycled paper.
•    Offer subsidised worm farms to households
•    Declare Auckland streets smoke free – stop cigarette butts ending up on our streets going into the sea, killing wildlife and polluting our waters.
•    Install and maintain filters to stormwater run-offs to eliminate litter going into the sea.
•    Communicate our vision and commitment to the environment with new immigrants.
•    Support for local waste minimisation projects such as local composting facilities
•    Support for community led waste minimisation projects such as the zero waste initiative we have been working on with our local shops since 2006
•    Support and accreditation for businesses that recycle, minimise carbon emissions and waste.
•    Localising and owning our transfer stations, establishment of local resource recovery centres.
•    Provide a central repository for local waste information and concerns that offers research in ways to reuse and recycle those materials.

Clean air
•    Subsidise electric cars, photovoltaic cells and other alternatives to fossil fuel
•    Introduce a more stringent emissions tests on cars, trucks and BUSSES.
•    Plan for an immediate reduction to vehicles on the road – 44% of Auckland’s emissions are from transport.
•    Provide a clear and detailed plan for CO2 reducing emissions to achieve targets.
•    Subsidise sustainable home water supply systems such as water tanks, filtration systems, pumps and piping etc. Water should not be seen as a commodity.

Chapter 6, Auckland’s response to climate change
We support the direction setting in chapter 6 to tackle climate change issues and increase energy resilience. Auckland as the New Zealand’s largest city has a responsibility to the nation to develop clear strategies to mitigate and adapt affects of climate change. We strongly support the priority of protecting Auckland’s natural environment and working together with communities on a small scale.
•    Protect existing trees to reduce atmospheric CO2.
•    Plant trees to reduce atmospheric CO2.
•    Give local Boards the power to decide on local issues (such as a proposed removal of a  Pohutukawa tree in Poronui street).
•    Focus on local food production, community fruit trees and community gardens in the city.
•    Encourage and support organic farming and biodiversity – reduced food miles
Reduce the use of fossil fuel, support and subsidise alternatives to fossil fuel use.
•    Focus on building sustainable communities which include small shops in walkable distance.
•    Support renewable energy.
•    Focus on public transport, improve public transport and make cycling safe.

Kind regards

Judith Holtebrinck, Sara Rishworth, Gail Batten,
MEVP Steering committee

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The Auckland Plan – Submissions close at 4pm on Tue, 25.10. 2011.

September 30th, 2011

The Auckland Council has launched the Draft Auckland Plan, the new spatial plan for our region, and is asking for your submissions on what we have got right and what we need to change.

The Draft Auckland Plan sets out our vision of how to achieve the world’s most liveable city by 2040.

You can find a copy of the Plan on line at:

and in hard copy at your local library or at our Local Board Office or at the Mt Eden Village Centre.

Submissions close at 4pm on Tuesday, 25 October 2011.

Our Local Board is holding a series of drop-in sessions to offer you help and advice when drafting your submissions.

Board members will be present on:

  • Saturday 15th October from 10.00 -12.00am at Pt Chev Library
  • Saturday 15th October from 2.00 -4.00pm at Epsom Library
  • Tuesday 18th October from 9.30 -11.30am at the Local Board Office, 135 Dominion Rd, Mt Eden.

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Events and ongoing classes at the Mt Eden Village Centre

September 30th, 2011

Meet and Hear the Party Candidates, Auckland, 31 October 2011

Ongoing classes and group meetings in the Mt Village Centre:

  • AA Meeting, every Mon, Wed, Fri,  10am – 11.30am,
  • Bollywood dance classes, Tue: 10.30 am-11.30am, starting 1st of October,
  • Church choir, every Thu 7pm-8.30 pm, contact: Justin,
  • Dance classes, every Mon 6.30pm – 10pm,
  • Move to improve – Feldenkrais: every Tue night 7.30pm, Contact; David Sullivan, E;
  • NA meeting, every Fr 12am-1.30pm
  • Tango classes: Wed 7-8pm, Beginners/Intermediate, Contact: Craig Love:
  • Yoga every Thu night, 6-7pm, Contact: Nora Garcia-Mora,E:
  • Yoga classes every Tue and Thu, 9.15am-10.15am
  • Church service, every Sun 9am-12 midday

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Moving Planet Auckland

September 10th, 2011 presents MOVING PLANET AUCKLAND –  a Day to Move Beyond Fossil Fuels

People of Auckland are gathering for a day of action to show our concern about the state of the planet and send a message to our leaders that we want action on climate change Saturday 24th September: the day of the All Blacks/ France game!

Dress up as your favourite fossil fuel alternative. Let’s create a visual spectacle of human wind turbines, electric train drivers etc. Or keep it simple and decorate yourself with the unifying symbol for the worldwide Moving Planet day: arrows to symbolise moving away from fossil fuels.
Those that are biking are meeting on at 11am at Wynyard Quarter playground for a moving planet bikeride. All those with two (or one) wheels are welcome to join.

Non-bikers will join the riders at 1pm at QEII Square on two feet, skateboards, tricycles, roller skates or roller blades.  We will march together up Queen Street to demonstrate together how much we need action on climate change- it a message to our leaders and peers that this IS important!
We’ll finish at Albert Park, where we will have a picnic, with vegetarian food available to purchase.

There’ll be music and kids entertainment too.
Come join us and show your support for New Zealand to move beyond fossil fuels – make your voice heard!

11.00 Gather at Wynyard Quarter at the playground
11.30 Bike Ride
13.00 All gather at QEII Square
13.30 March
14:00 Arrive at Albert Park for picnic/food/music/fun times

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Knitting the All Blacks- 10th of September at the Mt Eden Village Centre

August 26th, 2011

Can you knit?  Do you want to warm up the three ‘people’ (public art works, Richard Wedekind) in the playground at the back of Mt Eden village for the duration of the RWC?

Join us on September 10th at the Mt Eden Village Centre to knit their All Black jerseys. We need about a dozen people (so everyone’s fingers get a rest) – 6 in the morning and 6 in the afteroon. We will knit in stocking stich 6 rectangles (basically) and add collars, numbers and silver ferns afterwards.
Please contact Penny Hansen 630 0335 if you’d like to join us.

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100 Citrus for schools:

August 10th, 2011

We had a wonderful day on Sunday the 7th of August providing 100 fruit trees to local schools
and kindergartens. 

All 100 fruit trees now have their roots down in their new garden homes in schools and
kindergartens all over Auckland.We would like to thank all the teachers and
parents for sharing our vision of free and healthy food by taking action and being involved in the ‘Citrus in schools’project.

We have three main goals with this project  - to support families with lowering their grocery bills; to encourage local food production;  and to teach children how to plant and care for fruit

Our commitment for July 2012 is to provide 500-1000 fruit trees to schools and kindergartens. If you want to be part of this project and suggest a site for the planting of a fruit tree please register on our website: Best wishes, Your fruit tree ladies
Judith, Justine, Karen, and Jo

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New Litter report line for a litter free Auckland

April 28th, 2011

Did you know that every day approximately 35,000 cigarette butts end up on Auckland’s streets and subsequently in our beautiful harbours? Birds and marine life often mistake the small litter items, in particular cigarette butts for food and choke or die.

Auckland Council now offers a free litter report line. Litter offenders can face up to $400 fine. If you would like to help to make Auckland litter free you can now take action and report littering.

The process is easy. If you see someone littering, write down as much information as you can: car registration, make, colour, location, time and from where the litter item was disposed (from driver or passenger window) and call 0800 INTHEBIN or text the information to council’s litter report text service: 022 468 43 24.

If you would like to see what litter does to our environment, please check out this short movie from Aligator, a marine research foundation

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Create urban bio-corridors

April 28th, 2011

Planting roadside berms to create urban bio-corridors is an wonderful initiative from our friends at GreyLynn2030. We also spotted some beautiful berm planting in Sandringham. This is a great way to create biodiversity in front of your house that can be beneficial to bees and other important insects in our city and to meet your neighbours. To find out more about guidelines, suitable plants all you need to know to get started go on GL2030 website.

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Be the change you want to see in the world. Mahatma Gandhi